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Saturday, 29 September, 2001, 18:10 GMT 19:10 UK
Miraculous win for Mantilla
Felix Mantilla has made his first final of the year
Felix Mantilla has made his first final of the year
Spain's Felix Mantilla saved nine match points on his way to an incredible victory over compatriot Albert Portas at the Sicily International.

The 27-year-old came through the semi-final 2-6 7-6 (7/4) 6-3 after recovering from a set and a break down.

Mantilla will meet Argentine David Nalbandian in Sunday's final after the 19-year-old beat Spain's Tommy Robredo 6-2 7-6 (7/4).

Third seed Portas looked sure to progress to the final when he led Mantilla 5-3 in the second set.

But he let his opponent back into the match by wasting three consecutive match points with a series of unforced errors.

Six more match points came and went before the second set eventually went to a tie-break, and Mantilla took his chance to level.

Portas completely lost his way in the final set, allowing Mantilla to secure a final place for the first time this season.

Nalbandian also let two match points slip by against Robredo, but the world number 64 recovered sufficiently to close out the match in the tie-break.

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